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Nationalist Party hero statues abandoned in park

Friday, July 10, 2015 - 01:15

Statues of former Taiwanese Nationalist Party leader Chiang Kai-shek gather dust as party faces defeat in next year's elections. Julie Noce reports.

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A wooded lakeside park in Taiwan is home to dozens of statues of former President, Chiang Kai-shek. The Nationalist Party hero is depicted holding a book or standing regally as tourists snap pictures and stroll through the grounds. But the busts weren't placed here to honour Chiang. They were rounded up and dumped here by former president Chen Shui-bian of the pro-independence party between 2000 and 2008. The Nationalist Party is currently in power but has been in crisis mode since it lost power in local elections in November. Many Taiwanese are unhappy with slowing economic growth, stagnant wages and doubt closer ties with China will benefit them. (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) 40-YEAR-OLD LOCAL RESIDENT, MAY LEE, SAYING: "The KMT has been conniving with many groups to do things they shouldn't be doing, such as creating social disorder. I think they really ignore letting us people know about what's happening around this world. As other countries are progressing, Taiwan is regressing. That's roughly how it is." This graveyard of statues, just a stone's throw from Chiang's mausoleum, could foretell a similar fate for the party come election time.

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Nationalist Party hero statues abandoned in park

Friday, July 10, 2015 - 01:15